New portfolio reflects upbeat market

5:00 AM Saturday July 29, 2017 Colin Taylor

The vacant ‘old’ New World supermarket for sale at 40-44 East Street, Papakura. Photo / Supplied

There is a growing awareness that direct investment in New Zealand commercial property offers an uncomplicated combination of both yield and capital gain, says John Urlich, commercial manager of Barfoot & Thompson Commercial in the foreword to the agency’s latest Insite portfolio publication.

“The availability of trading bank finance continues to challenge many participants, but we are buoyed by the outlook for the macro market environment,” Urlich says. “The Reserve Bank of New Zealand notes that the outlook for global economic growth has increased and become more broad-based over the past six months.

“This optimism from offshore, continuing net migration, and still further population growth underpins Auckland’s growth trajectory.

“Owner occupiers and investors are active in our specific commercial property markets where we are seeing vacancy rates across all sectors at historic lows. Rental levels for industrial properties are on the rise; there is substantial pre-leased office development; and consumer confidence and spending is improving the prospects for retail property.”

Urlich says Barfoot & Thompson Commercial achieved a record first quarter, “including a huge $84 million of Auckland CBD sales and leasing transactions completed”.

He says the latest Insite portfolio is the agency’s biggest ever with 45 properties. “Those listed are from all over Auckland: Papakura, Hobsonville, Howick, Wairau Valley and CBD; while regional offerings include Gisborne and up north in Marsden Point.”

Among the properties featured is a former New World supermarket in Papakura which became vacant following the opening of a new New World about 120m north-west at29-31 East St.

“This prime commercial property is in the commercial centre of Papakura,” says agent Rohan Cooke who, with colleague Glen Hitchcock, is selling 40-44 East St by tender closing at 4pm on Wednesday August 30.

“The vacant possession aspect of this freehold property is expected to attract a variety of prospective buyers including investors, owner-occupiers and developers,” Cooke says.

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A franchised Mexicali Fresh restaurant leases 103 Victoria Street West in the Auckland CBD. Photo / Supplied

The property is a single level building on a relatively flat 5008sq m site with a ground floor area of 1555.43sq m; mezzanine areas of 70.69sq m; covered truck dock of 100.99sqm and 97 car parks around and in front of the building.

Occupying the corner of East Street and Wood Street, it is accessible from Wood St and a service lane and has a frontage of East St of about 74m and to Wood St of 56m.

“The property is within the Papakura CBD around 2.5km from the Papakura State Highway 1 interchange, 350m from the Papakura train/bus terminal and is surrounded by retail

and commercial businesses,” Hitchcock says.

Zoned Business - Metropolitan Centre, the building has a current Building Warrant of Fitness, and the site is subject to a council height variation control confining new buildings to 40.5m.

In Auckland city, an attractive two-level character building leased to the well-known restaurant Mexicali Fresh franchise is for sale for the first time in 30 years.

“This freehold property has long been admired for its high profile strategic corner location opposite Sky City and the Convention Centre in the heart of the CBD,” says John Stringer who, with colleague Nick Bernecker, is selling at 103 Victoria St West by tenders closing at 2pm on Wednesday August 23.

The building of 149.65sq m - comprising an 80.15sq m ground floor and 69.50sq m first floor -  was constructed in stages between 1853 and 1935, and occupies 94sq m of land designated Lot 1 and 1/4 share of lot 5 comprising 15sq m which is zoned Business City Centre.

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This big South Auckland Wiri complex at 12 Bolderwood Place encompasses two industrial buildings. Photo / Supplied

The property is situated on the northern side of Victoria St West on the corner of Hobson St directly opposite Sky City.

Stringer says the property has a six-year lease to the Mexicali Fresh franchisor which commenced November 4, 2013. It earns $101,414 per annum plus GST and outgoings with annual reviews alternating between the Consumer Price Index and market each year.

“This is a very rare opportunity to secure an affordable investment property in a high-profile location with upside from an area which is undergoing rapid growth and transformation,” Bernecker says.

“Victoria Street West and Hobson St are main transport routes within easy walking distance of Queen St. Major infrastructure upgrades include the Auckland City Rail Link with Britomart Station and the planned Aotea Station within short walking distances.

In addition, the 700 million Sky City Convention Centre is diagonally opposite and is due for completion in 2019 which will be able to cater for up to 4000 guests.

Resource consent has also been granted to the New Development Group for a planned $350m, 209m high tower, to be constructed on the ‘bungee site’ directly across from 103 Victoria Street West. the 'bungee site'. The 302-room hotel and entertainment complex will encompass apartments, shops, restaurants, a cinema and two sky deck areas.

Among the industrial properties featured in the new portfolio is a big South Auckland Wiri complex made up of two industrial buildings with a total 4240.71sqm in building area and occupying 1.3ha of essentially level, regular-shaped, freehold land.

“This is a superbly located industrial property built in the mid-1990s and comprising a mixture of warehouse and office uses,” says Bill Carlson who, with colleague Anton Fatkin is selling 12 Bolderwood Place by deadline private treaty with a deadline of 4pm on Thursday August 31 – unless sold earlier by negotiation.

“Both buildings were previously owner-occupied for the use of moulding and timber manufacturing,” Carlson says.

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The high-profile corner property at 3002-3006 Great North Rd, New Lynn, is leased by a car dealership. Photo / Supplied

Fatkin says others features include vacant possession, a securely fenced site, drive-around site with dual access from Bolderwood Place, low site coverage, three-phase power, a rare Heavy Industry zoning under the Proposed Auckland Unitary Plan, convenient access to State Highways 1 and 20, and being close to Auckland Airport.

The road front building comprises a main warehouse with the offices and amenities over two levels. The first floor also has open plan foyer with a large meeting room.

Carlson says the main rectangular factory and workshop area has excellent drive-through access with eight roller doors along eastern and the western sides. It has a clear span and stud of 5.5m at knee and 6.4 at the apex.

Three adjoining factory and warehouse bays at the rear of the site are used as workshop and storage areas where the stud heights range from 4m to 5m. They all have roller door access at the southern and northern ends.

Out West at 3002-3006 Great North Rd, New Lynn, a 2701sq m high profile site with 820sq m of building leased to a car dealership is for sale on the corner with Portage Rd.

Zoned General Business and offering yard space for about 75 vehicles and a further 20 inside, it has been leased to Enterprise Motor Group since the 1980s and earns $150,403 net annually plus GST. Rent reviews are every two years and the final lease expiry is December 31, 2025 if all rights of renewal are exercised. 

“This prime corner site has become available to the market for the first time in several decades,” says Colin Stewart who, with colleague Jamie McDonald is selling it by tenders with a closing deadline of 4pm on Thursday, August 10.

Another freehold industrial building on 1343sq of land at 134 Captain Springs Rd, Onehunga, is being marketed as having “a near perfect” office-to-warehouse ratio of 10 per cent to 90 per cent – 94sq m office/amenities and 908sq m warehouse. 

“This strategically-located property built in 1972, has a solid tenant, favourable seismic report, near new roof, three-phase power, near new wiring and switch board,” says Nick Wilson who, with James Marshall, is marketing it for sale by auction at 10am on Thursday August 24.

“It’s for sale for the first time in 27 years; is exactly what industrial tenants want; and, being low maintenance, is the perfect industrial investment property,” Wilson says.

Having a Light Industrial zoning is leased to Vaico Limited for a net rental of $109,800 plus GST per annum on a lease commencing May 12, 2015 with three three-year terms and two-yearly market rent reviews.

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John Urlich, Barfoot & Thompson Commercial